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- Red Dead Redemption 2
Gabriel Sloyer, the Red Dead Redemption 2 voice actor who plays Javier Escuella, has opened up about the weird and secretive five-year shooting time it took to make the latest in Rockstar’s Western epic. Apparently, when he first nailed down the job, the actors didn’t even know what game they had signed up for.
In talking to Eurogamer, Sloyer revealed just how secretive Rockstar is when it comes to making one of its smash hit titles.
“Rockstar does a great job of keeping things secret,” he said. “You can’t tell your girlfriend or anyone what you’re working on. And it’s five years! They didn’t tell us anything, but we figured it out pretty soon that this is what we were doing, and it was a prequel…”
Sloyer had portrayed a minor character in GTA5 and was eager to work with Rockstar again on another successful game but that didn’t provide much insight into what he ended up reading.
“The first thing we shot was either rescuing John from wolves—which does appear very early, though there was a part with Javier fighting off wolves with a torch in a cave, so it didn’t happen exactly the way it does now—or the bar fight sequence,” he continued. “And I’m still going… what the f***? I’d just done GTA5 and did not know what was going on.
The Red Dead Redemption 2 voice actor continued, talking about how he started to put together what the project was.
“At that moment, I did not know who I was playing. I worked it out in the first couple of months, for sure,” said Sloyer. “We knew because of the boots, and because of the language we were in a Western. And it doesn’t take a genius… eventually we were like, well, what Western does Rockstar do?”
He goes on to talk about the shooting schedule as well as some of the oddities of working on video games compared to TV. According to Sloyer, there’s often no time to rehearse and you don’t even necessarily know what other people are going to be involved or even what the scene actually is.
“I remember my first day on GTA, walking onto a soundstage and seeing nothing there,” he said. “And someone said – ‘we don’t use the R-word here’. And I quickly realized they meant ‘reality.'”
It also seems that Rockstar went to a lot of work trying to confuse not only fans but also those who worked on the game, including this Red Dead Redemption 2 voice actor.
“I remember we shot a lot of stuff that was cut,” he continued. “I wasn’t in the writer’s room, obviously, but I’ve heard rumors… My castmates might say, ‘Oh I think they were going in this direction with this guy and then they switched him back the other way.’ We’re just guessing like anybody else.”
It’s a confusing process for the actors, which is partly what the recent voice actors strike touched on. Transparency is just one of the many important aspects for those in the business. Sloyer then concluded with his thoughts on this secretive process.
“And then my feeling is, are you filming this fake ending for us? To make us confused?” he said. “Are these things you’re deciding between, or…? But that’s the process. Think how many takes in a film don’t get used at all.”